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Hacking viruses are harmful programs that can control a computer system remotely, steal personal information and much more. They are spread via peer-to-peer networks, emails, and websites that offer free content. You can avoid a hacking attack by updating your software, staying away from downloading unreliable sources, and staying away vulnerable networks.

Cybercriminals are able to hack viruses for a variety of reasons. They may want create keystroke logs that track every word a user type. This gives the attacker all the information needed to get an identity stolen and access to bank accounts, credit cards and other important information. In addition, they may use a compromised computer as part of a system known as a botnet which could be used to send spam emails or launch attacks on other devices.

A virus may also be designed to overtake the functions of a device by changing the homepage of the device or redirecting search queries to an unintentional web site, or replacing the results returned by popular search engines. This kind of hacking is known as a backdoor virus.

In the past, hackers who constantly looked for low-tech methods to get around secure telecommunication systems and expensive long-distance calls were called freaks and phreaks (a combination of phone and freak). The majority of those who fall victim to viruses that hack computers today do not have anything to do with telecommunications, nor in tinkering with technology. They are the unfortunate victims of malicious hackers that exploit vulnerabilities in built-in computer security systems to steal sensitive data and disrupt normal computer use and cause financial loss to their victims.

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